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      12-02-2012, 07:38 PM   #1
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Water separation

Ok- I was going to make fun of 335dM for making stupid modifications. But he may well be onto something valid. After some poking around, it seems like the 335d is the only diesel in the US market without a diesel water separator. Is BMW relying upon a hydrosorb filter element or is BMW just pumping the water through the injection system because they want to make the US cars "maintenance free" at the risk of expensive repairs?

And before one is tempted to reply "this is not a problem because there is no water in the US diesel supply" one should note that every other diesel I have actually captures water in a separator and requires draining somewhat often.

So why does every diesel manufacturer in the US market but BMW supply a water separator? Does BMW utilize a water-absorbing filtration element to protect the injection system or should owners be following the lead of 335dM and looking for an aftermarket system?


-Michael
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      12-03-2012, 12:01 AM   #2
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      12-03-2012, 02:43 PM   #3
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Depends on whether you want to believe the manufacturer with regards to the filter media.
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      12-03-2012, 03:42 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ihbase
Ok- I was going to make fun of 335dM for making stupid modifications. But he may well be onto something valid. After some poking around, it seems like the 335d is the only diesel in the US market without a diesel water separator. Is BMW relying upon a hydrosorb filter element or is BMW just pumping the water through the injection system because they want to make the US cars "maintenance free" at the risk of expensive repairs?

And before one is tempted to reply "this is not a problem because there is no water in the US diesel supply" one should note that every other diesel I have actually captures water in a separator and requires draining somewhat often.

So why does every diesel manufacturer in the US market but BMW supply a water separator? Does BMW utilize a water-absorbing filtration element to protect the injection system or should owners be following the lead of 335dM and looking for an aftermarket system?


-Michael
What do you call stupid mods???
Filtration is key to keep engines healthy!
Just because it doesn't give more hp doesn't mean it's stupid!
Watch out for what you say !!!!
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      12-03-2012, 04:30 PM   #5
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Lol. I've been waiting for that. Personally I wish that our cars were capable of water separation in their stock form. I would imagine that the top reasons for excluding the technology were...
1. Cost
2. Space
3. BMWs are well-documented to defy the laws of physics and chemistry. When filling a BMW with diesel, water is physically incapable of being carried by the fuel. Similarly, transmission fluid can not degrade when the transmission in which it resides is installed into a BMW.
4. Cost
5. Weight

dM, do you happen to know what (if anything) our vehicle has to protect against water in the fuel? Does the filter also act as some sort of dryer or is it simply number 3 kicking in?
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      12-03-2012, 04:48 PM   #6
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First i would have to say that water can ( on the very longterm) damage our injectors.
I asked the dealer to change oil in tranny today and they answered NO! If i were to change my oil under warranty, i would loose my warranty on the tranny itself! WTF BMW???
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      12-03-2012, 06:23 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 335dM View Post
First i would have to say that water can ( on the very longterm) damage our injectors.
I asked the dealer to change oil in tranny today and they answered NO! If i were to change my oil under warranty, i would loose my warranty on the tranny itself! WTF BMW???
Lol. They can't do that. My dealer will change it for you...for $900 for fluids & gaskets only (drop the pan, change the sleeve, replace pan & fill). Parts & materials including the pan/filter and fluid are about 200, so you can guess which route i chose to take

But back to the topic, the issue as I understand it is that of corrosion and the possibility of flashing. I have only attempted seconds of research beyond reading everyone's posts, but the part for our fuel filter seems to be labelled "fuel strainer with heating", which leads me to believe that it does not somehow "dry" the fuel. Anyone know?
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      12-03-2012, 06:38 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FormerRotor View Post
I have only attempted seconds of research beyond reading everyone's posts, but the part for our fuel filter seems to be labelled "fuel strainer with heating", which leads me to believe that it does not somehow "dry" the fuel. Anyone know?
The heater is for cold fuel, definitely not for drying the fuel. From "BMW Advanced Diesel Technology" (factory handbook):

Quote:
The fuel heater only works with the ignition switched on and when
both of the following conditions are fulfilled:
Temperature drops below a defined value
A defined fuel delivery pressure is exceeded due to cold,
viscous fuel.
So, as can be seen, no mention of "Drying" but definitely a mention of cold fuel.
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      12-03-2012, 07:38 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 335dM View Post
What do you call stupid mods???
Filtration is key to keep engines healthy!
Just because it doesn't give more hp doesn't mean it's stupid!
Watch out for what you say !!!!
Ha. I'm just having fun with you. You are free to spend your money any way you like. But you do realize that in Canada, that thing will a rusty pile of perforated floor boards and flapping fenders before that engine fails due to insufficient oil filtration, right? What about a coolant filter!!!

But your water separation idea may be good. What did you use for a water separator? What did it install cost? Where is it located?

-Michael
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      12-03-2012, 07:51 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DieselDiner View Post
So, as can be seen, no mention of "Drying" but definitely a mention of cold fuel.
Indeed, so I assumed. My comment was more on the "strainer" verbiage instead of "filter" "desiccant filter" etc. I was thinking along the lines of some liquid line dryers in refrigeration systems which allow refrigerant and oil to pass but chemically absorb water and mechanically filter debris.

Thanks for the official excerpt. Obviously I have some reading to do

If we were to select an alternative filter or an additional filter as an in-line secondary, around what parameters would it be selected? I believe that there is a delta-p sensor in our fuel system which I assume is to identify a clogged/clogging filter. Does anyone know the stock differential pressures and flow rates so that the alternative filter selected can be specified accordingly? Are there other important numbers about which I am forgetting?
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      12-05-2012, 11:12 AM   #11
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I'm going to ping TIDwyse at the other forum, and see if he'll participate in this thread. I'm pretty sure there are a few people that have done this, but I'm drawing a blank right now. TDI has done several different things with d's, so I think his perspective will be very helpful.
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      12-05-2012, 02:47 PM   #12
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Previous thread where filtration was discussed with lots of good info:

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho...d.php?t=461450

And official specs for our d's fuel filter:
http://www.bmwtradeparts.co.uk/PDF/W...uelFilters.pdf

It's actually spec'd pretty good, and also separates water (although you can't drain the water, so if you get a big slug of water I'm guessing bad things would happen, as evident from the example pointed to in the first link).

To be fair, I've owned 6 diesel vehicles, all but the 335d had water separators, but I've never found more than a drop of water in any of them.
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      12-05-2012, 06:25 PM   #13
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Old Jetta Diesel and Water Separator

I had a 1986 Jetta Diesel (not turbo) that I finally sold in 2006 with around 300K miles. It came with a little plastic bag that you were supposed to use periodically to drain off the water. Sorry for lack of details because it was one thing I did not keep records on, but I do remember having water in that bag every time I did the exercise. I was never particular about where I bought diesel fuel. Over the life of the car I averaged 44.5 mpg.
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      01-04-2013, 11:22 AM   #14
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FYI..The FF is made by Mann (Wk5001) and water filtration is over 93% per my discussion with them.
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      01-04-2013, 01:52 PM   #15
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This was recently linked in a thread over at tdiclub regarding all the HPFP failures with the CP4 version of the pump they have (I'm sooooooo glad our vehicles still use the CP3 version). Found it interesting . . . and frightening.

http://www.fluidcare.be/site/wp-cont...ge%20Tanks.pdf
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      01-05-2013, 08:03 PM   #16
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Thanks, tdi. Definitely worth the read.
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      01-05-2013, 09:43 PM   #17
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Diesel Fuel and Water Contamination

This almost makes you want to fill up a storage container and treat the fuel at home before you introduce it to your vehicle. This may be enough to cause me to pick my fill up locations more carefully than I have been doing for the last 27 years. At least my old Jetta did separate out the water.
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      01-06-2013, 10:40 PM   #18
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If someone was wanting to try this, there's actually enough room for a water/methanol pump and a water separating/drainable secondary fuel filter in this location (preferably 2 or 5um rated).

The Stanadyne filters are rated at ~95% water filtering capability. If the OEM is ~93% that would make the combination somewhere in the 99.65% range ... maybe.

http://www.stanadyne.com/docs/pubf/F...%20%286%29.pdf
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      01-07-2013, 10:59 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 335dFan View Post
This almost makes you want to fill up a storage container and treat the fuel at home before you introduce it to your vehicle. This may be enough to cause me to pick my fill up locations more carefully than I have been doing for the last 27 years. At least my old Jetta did separate out the water.
In order... I try to stay with:

1) Shell
2) Chevron
3) BP
4) Exxon/Mobile

In other words, stay w/the name brand stations - they typically maintain higher QC standards.

I fill up with Shell 99% of the time. The times I fill up w/Exxon/Mobile my MPG's always seem to drop a point or so perhaps indicating a lower cetane fuel.
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      01-07-2013, 11:54 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TDIwyse View Post
If someone was wanting to try this, there's actually enough room for a water/methanol pump and a water separating/drainable secondary fuel filter in this location (preferably 2 or 5um rated).

The Stanadyne filters are rated at ~95% water filtering capability. If the OEM is ~93% that would make the combination somewhere in the 99.65% range ... maybe.

http://www.stanadyne.com/docs/pubf/F...%20%286%29.pdf
I love this setup. I'm debating right now b/n extending warranty and installing something to this effect.
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      01-07-2013, 05:56 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FormerRotor View Post
I love this setup. I'm debating right now b/n extending warranty and installing something to this effect.
Thanks.

Yeah, this is something that could cause warranty issues. My old Duramax and my present Cummins engines (Ram 2500 and Jeep Wrangler conversion) had/have the Stanadyne FM100 systems on them as well. Both the local chevy and dodge dealerships were OK with them being on there, although I didn't have any warranty issues required to press the issue.

Here's the gauge setup in the cab for viewing operating conditions on the water/meth injection and the important engine parameters (Boost, EGT's, Engine Torque, Coolant temp, EGR, Throttle). The Torque App on the Android is my favorite app of all time.
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